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Molesworth & Featherston (Weekend) – May 26, 2006

Molesworth & Featherston - Weekend Update edition

Business and Political News
May 26th 2006

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The emerging consensus around Telecom is that, for all of its pledges to change its ways, there will have to be wholesale changes at the top.

Chair Rod Deane is on the way out. The position of CEO Theresa Gatting looks only marginally better.

As even Telecom now accepts, its business strategy for a decade and a half has been driven by a regulatory approach - blocking competition and dominating the market. Its leadership might recognise the need now for a new approach, based around being the fleetest market participant with the best customer proposition.

The company needs new leadership to implement its new strategy. And for the first time the Telecom board will need to demonstrate genuine entrepreneurial skills, rather than administrative and regulatory ability. Few of the Telecom board have the back story.

If new management comes from inside keep an eye on Kevin Kenrick, who turned around Telecom's mobile strategy and now runs the company’s consumer business; and Technology, Enterprises and Wholesale chief Mark Ratcliffe.

Meanwhile Theresa Gattung told the TUANZ Telecommunications Summit Telecom's new strategy would include simpler, more bundled services, and lower prices with less service.

In two or three years, telcos will offer entertainment and information services as part of their core business. Google and Skype will be offering far more services Far more voice calls will be delivered over the Internet and we can expect seamless convergence between fixed and mobile services, possibly with one ‘does it all’ device.

Mobile broadband speeds will begin to match “the broadband suite” and Wimax - a high-speed wireless Internet connection service available over a wide area - will potentially deliver much of the last mile of broadband connection.


Party % Seats

Labour 42.64 53
National 42.05 53
Greens 6.10 8
NZ First 3.43 0
Maori 2.44 4
United Future 1.37 2
Act 1.05 1
Progressives 0.12 1

As usual, we assume sitting leaders hang on and that the Maori party holds its four electorates. It is a 122 seat Parliament with hangover seats for Jim Anderton and the Maori Party. The 62 seats needed to govern can be derived from Labour, the Greens and Jim Anderton - just.


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